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January 25, 2010

Concert review: George Strait, Reba McEntire and Lee Ann Womack at 1st Mariner

reba mcentire

John-John Williams IV was at 1st Mariner Friday night to see Reba McEntire, George Strait and Lee Ann Womack. Here is his review:

Reba McEntire (pictured, top) showed Friday night at 1st Mariner Arena why she is arguably the queen of country music, while veteran crooner George Strait (pictured, bottom) left me wondering why he hasn't been kicked from his throne.

Strait's dry performance lacked the flare and persona of McEntire. Strait's songs sounded pretty much the same in both lyrics and tempo. After the 10th reference to honky tonk, Strait's act started to wear thin.

It was a different story with McEntire and Lee Ann Womack, who went on before Strait. They both showed more style and flair. The two were dressed to impress, and flexed their vocal muscles with a good mix of songs. Their performances definitely delighted the crowd. (McEntire brought the audience to its feet on several occasions.)

Strait, on the other hand, sang one sad, whiny, slow song after another. It's a shame because the concert had so much promise. ...

A brunette (she's usually blond) Womack kicked things off with a slew of her No. 1 hits. (I know this because she reminded the crowd each time she sang one.) Highlights from her half hour on stage include her singing "Last Call" from her 2008 album "Call Me Crazy." The pain and liberation of the song was palpable.

"I Hope You Dance," the title track from her 2000 album, is a beautiful ballad that has become her signature song. (You've likely heard it played at weddings.) She dedicated the song to her two girls. It was a nice half-hour display of Womack's traditional country sounds.

george straitMcEntire was definitely the show stopper. She pulled out all the stops during her 90-minute performance. The iconic native Oklahoman took the stage after a montage of clips from her career was shown on several big screen televisions hanging from the rafters. She immediately launched into "What Am I Gonna Do About You," her 1986 hit.

McEntire then took the crowd on a hit parade which spanned more than three decades. "I Keep On Loving You", a new single off of McEntire's 2009 album of the same name was a crowd-pleaser. Written by hitmakers Brooks & Dunn, the ballad is tender with a very traditional country twang. I also enjoyed "Does He Love You," (McEntire's 1993 single from her Greatest Hits: Volume 2) which she recorded as a duet with Linda Davis.

Instead, Womack surprised the crowd and took the stage for a virtual sing-off. The two really captured the tension of the song. The crowd gave a standing ovation at the end.

Toward the end of the performance, Melissa Peterman, the co-star of McEntire's now defunct sitcom "Reba," came on stage for a funny stretch that included McEntire singing the show's theme song, "I'm a Survivor."

McEntire ended with an encore where she sang her signature song "Fancy." McEntire, who had now changed into a shimmering red dress and matching shoes, came back on to the stage after emerging from a taxi cab that drove down the aisle, which was reminiscent of the 1991 music video. The song -- the ultimate survivor's anthem -- brought down the house, and had the crowd invigorated and satisfied. That's where the concert needed to end.  

(AP photos by Gail Burton)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 2:07 PM | | Comments (77)
Categories: Concert reviews


You ought to be ashamed. George Strait is the King and you just ought to be ashamed.

Thanks for providing a wonderful review!!

I was also at the concert. I'm a fan of all 3 artists but I mainly went to see Reba. And she definitely was the star of the show!! Phenomenal!! I was getting kind of bored during George's set. I actually left in the middle to go look at the merchandise stands. I knew most of his songs and sang along but he was just boring to watch. He does have a winning smile though! haha. Lee Ann was great as well! Love her!

What'sa matta YOU??? George Strait still deserves the praise, the accolades, the attention he gets for continuuing to produce wonderful, traditional style country music (while also stretching to new vistas - like El Rey). His concerts deliver what the fans WANT: just George.....singing, smiling, struttin', and causin' us to simmer!!!

You are confused on one point. I wasn't there but I've seen the set list and the clips on youtube. When Reba stepped on stage, she launched into her first #1 hit from 1983, "Can't Even Get The Blues," not "What Am I Gonna Do About You." "WAIGDAY" is not even on the set lists I have seen at all.

Not to take anything away from Reba who is a great singer, the author of this article is a stunted imbecile who should be writing for a comic strip instead of a concert review.
From the few clips I was privileged to see from George Straits performance, the crowd was not disappointed and appreciated seeing a true artist. Thank God for people with ears instead of holes on the side of their heads.

I won't day much about the actual review since I know I'm not really a country music fan - I am a REBA fan. And she was spectacular. I'm commenting to point out an error in your review - Reba's first song was "Can't Even Get The Blue" (her 1st #1 song). The song "What Am I Gonna Do About You" - while one of my favorites - was not part of her set.

John-John Williams IV us an imbecil and wouldn't know a good concert if it hit him in the behind. I'm pretty sure this man or whatever is not even a country music fan and should not be doing reviews about somehting he knows nothing about. Anyone that would say that about George Strait is a fool and this article makes John-John a big one.

I've read quite a few accounts of George Strait being kind of boring live especially when compared to a more engaging singer. He'd probably seem more exciting if he worked the stage more like Reba does. From the accounts I've read, he just plants himself on his mark and sings. I'll be seeing for myself on Feb 26 in Orlando...I've got seats in the 10th row on the floor.

Thanks all for commenting. I welcome the feedback, no matter what. (That includes being called an "imbecile" and a "fool."
I will say that strutting and smiling have absolutely nothing to do with lyrics or depth of songs. Please read up what other reviewers have said about George's material. The words predictable and similar seem to pop up a lot. The fact is, this review was my opinion. We all have different tastes. Everyone is entitled to like what they like. As I can see from some of the other comments, I was not alone in my assessment of George's performance. It was long-winded and at times--boring. If that wasnsn't the case then there wouldn't have been so many people noticably leaving the concert before he was finished.
If I made an error about which song Reba opened with, then I am truly sorry. Reba put on one heck of a show. I hope this mistake did not take anything away from her world class performance.
Thanks all. Continue reading and commenting.

Those of you name-calling the writer are the ones who ought to be ashamed of yourselves. The man has the right to his opinion. You may politely disagree, and remember your manners. Make your case as to why George Strait is good or great on stage, instead of calling the author an "imbecile". It only makes YOU look like one.

I went to the concert in Greensboro, NC and George Strait is the KING of Country Music. He is the BEST! I enjoyed Reba's music but I was ready for George to come out and sing. I do not think that the writer of this review knows what he is talking about.

I commend George (the headliner) for setting up a stage when he tried to give the audience equal opportunity viewing of the stars. He worked the stage pretty equally although the place he may have performed a little extra happened to be facing me so yee haw :-) He performed his songs and they were great, I went to hear his songs and if they're similar than that must be what I like in him. Reba did rock too, to me this was a dream concert

I do not know what this writer was looking at. I am from Texas and saw this same trio when they opened the new Dallas Cowboy Stadium and that was a dream concert. George and Reba are the king and queen of country music. And yes George may just stand and sing, but look at how many years he has done that and still going strong. I have seen him 20 times and it just keeps getting better and better. Don't mess with the King of Country.

how long did the concert last

George Strait can sing, he can hold his audience in the palm of his hand. His music is timeless and yes, he does not use bells and whistles.... thats what his fans expect and that is what keeps them coming back year after year after year. He does not resort to smoke and mirrors or distractions to cover up a poor voice as so many artist have a need to do.
I love Reba also, and I think LeAnn is one of the best female singers out there. But It was George's show and make no mistakes about it.
Its too bad all of the Reba fans were no where to be found the last few years when she could not buy a hit song.
I would place a bet that this reviewer believes that Taylor Swift is a nightingale.

I will "politely" disagree with the author... Yes, he is entitled to his opinion, and so am I. KING George is called the King for a reason... his ability to withstand time! 57, count 'em, 57 #1 HITS. Obviously he is doing something right. I am a country fan, but more importantly A GEORGE STRAIT fan since 1981. He may, in the words of Lee Ann Womack, "Just Stand There And Sing", but that is what his fans want. I think you, Mr. Williams are just not a George Strait fan, and that's his opinion, his right. But to call him boring and I quote "should be kicked off his throne" was just plain mean and rude. You cannot compare George and Reba... they are 2 different performers with 2 different styles. I think you owe Mr. Strait and his fans an apology. I've seen other writers who are not crazy about George's music or his style, but they tell it without being rude.

hey guys reba ha ha she is decent lee ann alright but george is the frickin man. noone and i mean noone in music today of any kind can say they put out better music year after year. and i have seen him three times and ihave also seen kenny chesney, brad paisley, the flatts and keith urban and and i would take him in a show over those guys any day.

Listen up cats and kittens. You know there is only one king. Y'all better behave like ladies and gentlemen before I have to come back and haunt your dreams. Thankyouverymuch. (I have left the building.)

Even though John-John (did his mother like the name John that she had to repeat it?) has a right to his opinion, his comment that George "should be kicked off his throne" was very insulting. George is the Kind of Country, not pop which apparently dear John-John was thinking this was going to be. George has a beautiful voice and his concert goers (which by the way have sold out his concerts for many many years) want to hear him sing, not jump around like the "pop/country" singers (Chesney, Paisley, Urban) do. He has a following of fans that love him and keep coming back for more. Can't wait to see him in Des Moines!

I love all of them...but my Country Opinion is that GEORGE doesn't need to do anything but stand there and sing to us in his Country TWANG ! He is what Country stands for...

Can't wait to see him Saturday night in Charlottesville...He can just stand there & sing to us All night long with his traditional country sounds we all so Love and need to cherish them always...Traditional Country Music is slowly fading away right before our very I say Long Live the KING !!! :)

Keeping it Real - Keeping it Country !!! :)

Music is Peace :)

I went to the Concert in Greensboro, NC and I can tell you, it was KING GEORGE all the way. Reba is great. But George NEVER lets his fans down. He is the reason we keep going back to see him. HE IS REAL COUNTRY MUSIC. Not the Taylor's and the johnny come lately's in the music today.

How long was the total concert?
I saw the post that Lee Ann sang about 30 minutes, Reba 90 minutes, What about George, how long did he sing? Have tickets to the Charlottesville show and trying to figure out what time I may get home that night?


To Mr. Williams:
I'm sorry, I just had to read this review again and comment again. I commented above about you being rude and mean. But I see now that you were not only rude and mean, you are also very biased. Clearly, Mr. Williams, you are a REBA fan and that is fine, but this article is very biasedly written. Lee Ann and Reba JOINED George Strait on HIS tour and you literally have 1 paragraph written about his concert and you did nothing but trash him.

"Strait, on the other hand, sang one sad, whiny, slow song after another."

Again, this is YOUR OPINION... I thought a review was supposed to be based on FACT, not opinion. I am surprised the "powers that be" for this newspaper did not trash this article and ask you for a real review. It is poorly written and incredibly insulting. This is just my opinion, but I believe you owe Mr. Strait and his fan an apology. I will be sure not to read this paper again if this is the impression the Baltimore Sun wants to give people.

just to print a correction on my above post... i see i made a spelling error in the second to last sentence. It should read his "fanS"... i know there are some who will have a field day with that one, saying "oh he only has one fan..." so I wanted to correct that before anyone had a chance to comment. :o)


As the fellow who runs this blog (that's me with my arms crossed in the upper right corner), I feel semi-obliged to set the record straight here.

A review is a combination of opinion and facts. A concert review is typically 60 percent opinion and 40 percent fact. For example, stating which song was played is a fact. Calling a song "whiny" and "slow" is an opinion.

Also, I can't speak for him, but I don't think John-John is a fan of much country music, period. But whether or not he's a fan is beside the point. Music reviewers are supposed to write about a concert from as neutral a position as possible. As such, neither he nor I feel we owe anyone an apology. John-John called it like he saw it, and I stand behind his opinion.

As always, thanks for the feedback, folks.

I for one am insulted by this review. I am also sorry to disagree with Sam, someone does need to say an apology. Mr. John-John Williams IV could have written his review a little better, and nicer. I am not bashing his opinion by any means, but he could have been a little polite.

I also belive that he is indeed a country fan, but it is most likely the New Pop Country, that is not true Country music.
George Strait is the meaning of Country music, and to bash him or just give him 2 sentences worth of review (FOR HIS OWN CONCERT) is wrong. As said above by Donna, Lee Ann, herself knows who George is and what he stands for. This is why she performed the song "Stand There and Sing" at George Strait's ARTIST of the DECADE performance. Now I'm sorry, but I wonder what exactly that means, hmmm?

If readers want to actually read a good, True, review of the concert, I found one from another website that I wont post because the editor of this paper prob. will not post my whole comment if I do put it here. Sorry :(

Speaking of "whiny" and "sad" ... these comments are pathetic. So what - you like an artist that got a bad review on a nightlife blog!

George Strait has had plenty of awards and accomplishments throughout his career. I'm sure his career can survive a bad review.

Kim, are you talking about Dave McKenna's review on the Washington Post's blog Click Track? Here's a link:

If so, it's pretty telling that McKenna opens with Reba and spends the majority of the review discussing her set. George Strait, on the other hand, gets a couple paragraphs at the end.

These comments are the funniest things I've ever read on this site. Good work, John-John!

Now, you got 20-some comments on this, 2 on the Beach House thing. Maybe, just maybe, things are in the mainstream because people want to hear about them? And maybe the constant hipsterism vibe isn't as popular as you think?

Hey, I read the review.. Im the guy who posted georges set list as well as most of the close up videos you see on youtube.. I too felt like this wasnt george strait at his peak in concert performances.. But, with that said, you do have to realize (after being to many of his concerts) that the true beauty of his concerts are just found in the way he sings his songs with so much feeling.. He comes across as a very geniune person who really feels waht he sings.. I think he was good, but I do agree reba was probably the star of that show all together.. George did a great job, you just have to know what to expect when you see him.. "No smoke and lights" is what he is known for.

That lady from the TV show Reba sings now? Good for her.

I was at the Greensboro show. It was pretty clear most people were there primarily to see George. I was there to see Reba. Even though she's scaled back her showed during the last 10 years or so her music director keeps even the old songs fresh sounding with variations on the arrangements that keep true to the songs but adds some freshness to them too. She has toured a time or two before in the round so knows how to work the stage which means more than just move from point to point to sing a couple of songs. She suprised the audience with the "Does He Love You" duet with Leanne (I think LeAnne had lyrics written on her hand, I don't fault her just found it amusing). The performance was flawless. When Reba left the stage w/o having sung Fancy my sister had alread put away her camera but told her to get it out. Security was cleared from the ailse leading to the stage and knowing Reba's shows, knew something was going to happen on her way back in for the encore. Sure enough, the Fancy video started on the screens and the crowd jumped to their feet as the Taxi came out toward the stage and Reba got out. This is the most 'production' I've seen from Reba since the Girls Night Out Tour in '01. Giving all those George fans a taste of what a Reba show can be.

I, personally got bored during George's set but that's just cause I'm not as familiar with his material. I respect him, his accomplishments and his performance style. He and his band was flawless.

To the guy named "Jack" who said George Strait can survive a bad review - thank you!!! I just checked back in here and I'm shaking my head at the level of insults back and forth just because a writer didn't like a concert. Hasn't Strait been around for what seems like forever? I'm sure he's had bad reviews in the past, shook them off - or more than likely didn't read them or didn't care - and kept going. Perhaps these fans who are so upset can learn something from him.

This review is spot on without beating around the bush...I've read some others and they largely agree. However, other reviewers seem to be more diplomatic than this guy...instead of knocking Strait, they just ignore him and focus most of their reviews on Reba's set. Like it or not, George has a reputation of being just a guy that sings. That's what has made him a country legend. He has never been known to be good at working the stage and that's probably his biggest problem. Reba, on the other hand, has more expectations on her as far as production goes because of her past tours. If her set had been less of a spectacle and she had stood in one spot for most of the show, Strait would have looked better in comparison. As it is, however, Reba is just a really tough act for anybody to follow.

George Straight is a little [ahem].

My husband and I attended the Greensboro concert Sat. night. George was predictable, yes--but, wow, he was still the KING of country! Reba was good and so was Lee Ann, but George was great!! Loved it!

I traveled from Massachusetts to see the concert in Baltimore, so I was well "invested" in this concert. I am a very big fan of each artist, have all their albums, and have seen each of them before, so I can objectively report what I saw:

Lea Anne Womack was terrific. Very understated. Her performance was too short.

Reba was awesome. However, with a reservoir of so many hits, in my judgment she abuses the audience by singing so many non-starters. Still, her skit with Melissa Peterman was a high, her stage performance incomparable, her voice clear and strong, and ... when it comes to Fancy, you just have to be there to see her do it, no matter how many times you have seen it before.

In comparison, George Strait appeared in "black 'n white'. You could overlook his boorish performance (particularly in comparison to Reba) if he sang more of his hit songs. Instead, (my view) he abuses his audience with a series of senseless, whiney numbers that you never heard before and don't want to hear again. I'll check "NO" to seeing him again.

That Reba and George were never on stage performing together was a lost opportunity for those of us who traveled far to see the show.

TOTALLY agree with the opinion of the reviewer. Was at the show myself and saw it for myself. His opinions are spot on. ps. This is a co-headlining tour and if you choose to follow Reba then you better be ready for the consequences which are being called boring.

George Strait is the finest country music singer in the world, with a body of work that no other performer can touch.
Mr. Williams is a critic for the Baltimore Sun.
Enough said.

Some people are complaining that Reba is getting all of the attention when it's George Strait tour. This is just stupid. George Strait is a legend for a reason. He's a great singer and has great songs, but he isn't all that entertaining on stage. George has performed this way for years and it's worked and at 57 it's only natural to slow down. Reba on the other hand in one of the best entertainers in country music history. She commands tha stage and looks like she's having as much fun singing as we are watching. You look at Trisha Yearwood, Martina McBride, and others who came out 16 after Reba and Reba is still outselling them. This is no accident. When you see Reba you think of music, movies, broadway, her own sitcom, clothing line, and other things that made Reba still able to pass up Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood on the charts for a four week stay at number one. At 54 years old which is a record by 9 years. All of these things show why Reba gets and has earned the praise she gets. Lee Ann and George again are great but Reba is the better entertainer.

Well, the writer of this review is entitled to this opinion, but it evident he is not a true country music fan. Look back in the day, at the greats like Johnny Cash, George Jones, Willie Nelson and many others. A true country crooner can sing songs and hold his audience, and does not need to parade around the stage with pyrotechnics and flashy stunts like Garth. The reason people were leaving was because they were REBA fans. Lets face it, Reba is a great singer and an awesome country gal, but she uses glitz and glamour also to capture the audience. Newsflash: ITS BALTIMORE people. Our only country station has continuously flirted with a pop music line, and they hardly ever play George or Alan anymore. Most people in this city wouldn't know true country music if it bit you in the ass.

I read the review and all of the comments. Sam is probably right when he said the reviewer is not a country fan. George and Reba are two different type of performers. She wants to entertain with glamour and dynamics. George just wants to be a country singer who puts himself, his voice and his music out there for his fans. I have never heard him called "whiny." I like Reba, but George is my all-time favorite country singer and I can't wait to see him in Vegas for the eleventh time doing what he does best.

George is the how a country artist should entertain. I'll take him over today's crop of trash from Nashvile (spelled that way on purpose)

Because they prefer Reba over George Strait means there not real country fans, thats the dumbest thing I've ever heard.Reba performs The Greatest Man I Never Knew and Falling Out Of Love with just her and a mic. Reba sings a variety of songs which is why she's fun to watch. George is great but he just stands there. You can get the same thing by putting in his cd. Reba is simply the better performer and will continue to get most of the attention and rightfully so.

I have seen George Strait 7 times. Do you really think I would keep going back to see a dry performance? After every show, I am sad to see him go. I could sit and listen to him all night. You are crazy!

Somebody oughta knock this reveiwers teeth out with a lead pipe.

'Cause that's what country music is all about, right Adrian?

Mr. Williams,
It sounds like you do not like any of George Strait’s music and that your mind was already made up about his performance before you even saw it. The next time you write a blog about a performance you don’t like, you should use some kinder words. I have read reviews where people have said that George Strait is boring, but saying that he needed to be kicked from his throne was pretty rude. So you and most of the people in Baltimore preferred Reba, that’s OK, but there are plenty of people out there who enjoy seeing George Strait, standing there and using his wonderful voice to entertain the crowd with great country music! Last year I had the privilege of seeing Mr. Strait for the 9th time! During the opening acts (Julianne Hough and Blake Shelton), not many people stood, but when King George came onstage the crowd went crazy! Everyone was standing the whole time, it was so loud after every song he sang and I didn’t see any one leaving!

I will say that I love all three artists. That being said, when someone pays that much money for a ticket, you better put on a killer show. Reba always delivers, an amazing entertainer, and puts money into her show. George should put a little more ooomph in his performances, put more $$ in the show OR charge half the price for the ticket. We can listen to cds at home that sound "better" than the live show.

Terry - then maybe you should stay home and listen to cd's... If you wanted to see smoke, lights and volcano blasts and someone jumping around the stage, maybe you should spend your money on Keith, Kenny or one of the POPtry artists. I have been attending Mr. Strait's shows for years, sometimes 2 and 3 times a year and have NEVER seen one person walk out.

Well thank you for your input on the concert that you observed. I have to agree with the comments about Reba, she is well awsome, and Lee Ann is always beautiful and I love her sound. But I do have to say that there is a king and queen of every situation and Reba is Queen and George is King, Thats just the truth look at the record sales and the years they have both invested in this type of talent. In my opinion people that judge George Straight by just his concert performance is near sided. Also they are a few people with your opion, your kinda like "keeping up with the jones" type of person, just by your perseption of the concert. George Straight has performed the same way for years and Alot of use enjoy the simple strumming of a quitar and not the fireworks, freaky light show and performers monkeying around on the stage. So I would still buy a ticket to see the king, and watch his dry, boring, sad and honkey tonk performance.

Excuse me but who is anyone to critique George Strait. Like the guy needs to be reviewed. The concert was a first class experience like everything that has to do with George. Been going to his concerts for 15 years, every year he had a tour, they were always sold out and had the crowd on thier feet, this one was no different.

Interesting reading. Maybe, George was just being himself, a gentleman, and letting the ladies shine. He's not been a flashy performer since his "Pure Country" days , remember his performance of "Dusty" ? "You're just gonna stand on that stage and sing?" You don't fix what's not broken. Mr. Strait is doing a great job for those who like his music and his style.

of course reba is the best .i mean when she steps on that stage it's like she grabs your heart an won't let it go until she done singing.sorry to say this george is boring.i'd rather see reba .she's the best an alot better than george . no wonder they call reba the queen of country music.and reba will always be the queen of country. love ya reba!!!!!!!

I can't say I'm a fan of George, however I do know him to be a traditionalist- and for concert seekers today looking for flare and thrills- shouldn't ever expect anything more than just a gentleman. Maybe Reba's flashy act might be the cause of boredom for the country troubadour.

Just saw the concert last week in Phoenix. I agree that Reba stole the show. I was disappointed in George, not because he lacked glitz, but because there was too much. Also, he didn't play all of his old great hits. I saw him many years ago and liked him much better. Now there is too much techno stuff going on and the band is too loud. C'mon George, "Just stand there and sing" for us old fans.

I just saw George in Vegas. He was on for almost two hours and the house was packed to the rims. I enjoyed Reba and Lee Ann's singing but I'm not entertained by Reba's gimmicks and ad libs and taking us down memory lane. Those who are interested in flair can have it, but I was there because of whistles, no sound effects, no props, but great singing with emotion and phrasing, great songs, and giving his fans everything they want. We Strait fans like him just the way he is. That's why we keep going back to his concerts over and over again. Can't wait until he goes to Vegas next year!!! For me, there's no one like him in country. He's one of a kind and he's the King of Country!

Reba gimmicks and ad libs and taking us down memory lane is something others would call interacting with the audience instead of staying in one spot and boring us. I was also at that show in vegas and Reba was easily the star of the show.

I'm beginning to think this combo is not the best for entertaining. Reba and George are both queen and king, but each have a total different idea on how to throw a live show. Since Reba's is very exciting, upbeat, great vocals, props, etc...maybe she should go on after George? Just sayin, you build up a show with the best for last. It kinda just simmers after Reba is love George Strait, but lets be realistic.

Amen Terry!

I agree with you Terry. George is a quiet entertainer which is fine if it's just him, but since he goes after Reba it can get very boring. By the time he goes off it's 4 and half hours later and that's not including the time just to get in. Either way this concert is going to be great press for Reba.

Please anyone been to the George and Reba concert 2010...looking for set list, would like a list of songs song by all 3 performers.....thanks so much

Just a note:
Reba's exact song lists seem to vary by city. In Atlanta, she focused on what else "Georgia". So the song list doesn't seem to be the true subject. I respect that George Strait is the iconic traditional country singer. In ATlanta, the stage was "in the round" and he just came across as very fixed & tired. Reba's fireball preformance built the crowd into an active frenzy and it was probably a hard act to follow as it was one performer's style verses his style which was totally opposite from her style.

I really wish I was at the same concert you guys were at... because I attended Phoenix and Vegas and thought Mr. Strait was amazing. I watched Reba... She did her songs, walking around the stage with mic in hand (she doesn't play the guitar so she can hold a mic) also and except for that little bit with Melissa, there was nothing so eye-popping about her. She sings beautifully and looked amazing, but I didn't see flashing lights, or dancing from her either. She was just singing same as George. He takes command when he is on that stage. I was right there in the first row and he was captivating. Making eye contact with fans, smiling and thanking the crowd.

I guess you just cannot please everyone because I've heard countless people say he should change his set list, in their words ... "tired of the same old songs, play some new ones". So this tour he plays many songs from both "Twang" and "Troubadour" and now we hear ... "we don't know the new stuff, where are the old songs?" Make up your minds people... He is called the King for a reason, ain't no body better at singing country music!

Another great review,

Outrageous. George is the KING so deal with it and appreciate real country music

I love George Strait and i have to tell you that I saw him in Philly in 2008 and yes, he is not a dynamic entertainer who oozes of bubbly personality he is true to himself and to country music and he is the King of the Troubadours.

It is ridiculous for someone to call George Strait boring. you obviously aren't a true country music fan. That's just what George does. He doesn't need to run around stage like a maniac and have lights and fireworks. That's not George. He is content with just his band and a guitar. It has been working for him for 25+ year. If it aint broke don't fix it. He is arguably the most successful country singer of all time; a living legend. You really can't compare Reba and George. Yes they are both country singers, but they are completely different artists. It is ridiculous to even compare them.

Ok Reba and Lee Ann did a great job, I actually like both of them better since I saw them live. But I went to see The King and boy did he live up to his name! With that beautiful smile and traditional country sound, ....I was far from disappointed. I just saw him 4 nights ago and am dying to see him again! Anyone that says that George is boring or needs to change his stage presence isn't a true country fan. Period.


I was offended by the remarks about that: "Strait's dry performance lacked the flare and persona of McEntire". Well my opinion on that is: to each is their own! That also reminds me of when Lee Ann Womack sang "Just Stand There and Sing" on the artist of the decade, for us Strait fans we don't need moving all around the stage or him being someone else. All Strait needs to do is just stand there and sing! And all of the fans will love it. "Strait, on the other hand, sang one sad, whiny, slow song after another." It sounds like there that you're complaining about that he is a emotionless singer, well just last year I saw Strait at the USANA Amphitheater in Utah with Blake Shelton and Juliane Hough (Which are both pretty good to see in concert) and each song he sang was that needed the emotion, it was there. Unfortunately, some people cannot respect for the talent of the King of Country. Speaking of emotion in Strait performances: go to youtube and look-up: george strait where were you, and the first result that comes up is from CMT Giants: Alan Jackson and Strait covered the song and did a excellent cover, I'd almost argue that it was better than Jackson's version, but Jackson did a great job too. For sure wow Strait did a very emotion filled performance on that Jackson song, but from one Strait fan to another he's the best country singer around.

I can't even express how annoyed I am with this review. First of all he is clearly NOT a country music fan. First of all, he got the names of songs incorrect (Reba's opening song); he must have went to google and looked up the songs to find out what they were called and when they debuted because he obviously wouldn't know since he isn't a true country fan. Second of all, to call George Strait's performance dry and "whiney" is absurd!!! George is the King of country and always will be. He has led the way for every coiuntry star today! I guess the reviewer is into the "pop-country" which isn't half the talent of what George can offer!!! I just think someone that knows what they are talking about should have done the review.

I can't even express how annoyed I am with this review. First of all he is clearly NOT a country music fan. First of all, he got the names of songs incorrect (Reba's opening song); he must have went to google and looked up the songs to find out what they were called and when they debuted because he obviously wouldn't know since he isn't a true country fan. Second of all, to call George Strait's performance dry and "whiney" is absurd!!! George is the King of country and always will be. He has led the way for every coiuntry star today! I guess the reviewer is into the "pop-country" which isn't half the talent of what George can offer!!! I just think someone that knows what they are talking about should have done the review.

2011 is on doors, and I’m waiting impatiently to see my favorite Lee Ann Womack on stage. I’m a crazy fan and can’t wait. Love u Lee!

"Strait, on the other hand, sang one sad, whiny, slow song after another."

That is what this clown of a reviewer said about George Strait. Apparently that was supposed to be a rip on George. This review is a joke. Hank Williams Sr is the godfather of modern country music and sang very much the same sad whiny slow songs. That is what alot of country music fans love.
That's like going to a blues concert and saying why are all of these songs sad!
I will be seeing George Strait in Salt Lake in a couple of weeks and I am glad he will not prance all over the stage like Mich Jagger in a cowboy hat. Cowboys like myself like our music like we live our lives, honest and without a lot of bull crap.

How do you expect throngs of adoring George Strait fans to react to such a flippant, short sighted and discourteous review? No one has argued that you don’t have a right to have an opinion. You either intentionally penned this undeservingly harsh and unbalanced review to be controversial or you clearly performed no professional background research of your subjects. Either way, a good editor should have called you on it. I personally dismiss you as a flash in the pan want to be journalist whose career in mainstream journalism will likely flame out long before George decides “on his own” to relinquish his throne as the King of country music. This was uncalled for and sensationalized journalism. Good luck at your next stop … perhaps the National Inquirer.

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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